PayPal joins the Dark Side?

PayPal just updated their User Agreement – and went barking mad.

The new paragraph at section 1.3 reads as follows:

“When providing us with content or posting content (in each case for publication, whether on- or off-line) using the Services, you grant the PayPal Group a non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, sublicensable (through multiple tiers) right to exercise any and all copyright, publicity, trademarks, database rights and intellectual property rights you have in the content, in any media known now or in the future. Further, to the fullest extent permitted under applicable law, you waive your moral rights and promise not to assert such rights against the PayPal Group, its sublicensees or assignees. You represent and warrant that none of the following infringe any intellectual property right: your provision of content to us, your posting of content using the Services, and the PayPal Group’s use of such content (including of works derived from it) in connection with the Services.”


And what is “content” supposed to be? PayPal is a payment service. So the only content there is, is the online stuff people and companies sell using PayPal as payment provider. Did PayPal just claim control over all of that?


• Bitcoin is the Future: PayPal Changes Terms of Service to Take Your Content
• PayPal

18 Responses to PayPal joins the Dark Side?

  1. Ethern April 26, 2015 at 12:06 am #

    You’re taking too much liberty with the language there. It says if you provide Paypal with the content, not when you sell something and just pay with paypal. The reason for the clause is in regards to dispute claims. If you take a screenshot and send to paypal as proof of something during a dispute claim, THEN you provide content to paypal, which this says you grant paypal a license to view and reuse. The worrying part though, is that it also applies for offline items sent to them, and such items can even include your bank statement and/or picture of your ID or drivers license. Granting paypal a license to use such things as they like, is certainly worrying.

  2. Allan April 26, 2015 at 1:37 am #

    I wonder if there isn’t some cross-over happening from eBay’s license? As well, PayPal provides some services for drop-in shopping carts, where I think they allow you to upload product shots & descriptions; I imagine that might be some of the content they refer to.

    Uncool to be sure, but not surprising and relatively common.

  3. Anonymous Andy April 26, 2015 at 1:38 am #

    Paypal started out on the dark side. Follow their initial seed money/investors down the rabbit hole.

  4. Dušan April 26, 2015 at 9:51 am #

    US version seems unchanged

    1.3 Privacy of Others; Marketing. If you receive Information about another User through the PayPal Services, you must keep the Information confidential and only use it in connection with the PayPal Services. You may not disclose or distribute a User’s Information to a third party or use the Information for marketing purposes unless you receive the User’s express consent to do so.

    You may not send unsolicited email to a User or use the PayPal Services to collect payments for sending, or assisting in sending, unsolicited email to third parties.

  5. Jack April 26, 2015 at 10:21 am #

    I think the “content” is your payment history. Paypal have the right to do whatever they like with it, and you can’t stop them.

    • Fab April 26, 2015 at 2:04 pm #


  6. Anonymous Poster April 26, 2015 at 11:17 am #

    Economic Anarchy

  7. KyleOrdway April 26, 2015 at 12:13 pm #

    That is the scariest clause I’ve ever read.

  8. Tommy M April 26, 2015 at 3:53 pm #

    Seems to me, maybe they’re about to branch out, expand into content hosting, and this is done beforehand. What’d’ya think? Plausible anyway. Also the word ‘non-exclusive’ is a bit of a comfort. But I see your point, and thanks for the heads up!

  9. Doug April 26, 2015 at 4:01 pm #

    Shame on you for actually reading and understanding the user agreement.

  10. Phil Bootherstone April 27, 2015 at 6:16 pm #

    It does look as though, by using Paypal, I am agreeing that they or anyone acting through them (is an e-Bay seller a sub-licensee?) can infringe my trademark – which sounds like a con-man’s charter. Perhaps a trademark agent would care to comment?

  11. Truthtobetold April 28, 2015 at 11:58 am #

    “Non-exclusive” is a relief?

    “not restricted to the person, group, or area concerned; not exclusive.”

    So it basically means, “not restricted to the person”, but more all-encompassing.

    Still feel relieved? Legalese is not english, its words do not have the same meaning as english words do.

  12. paypal tool April 30, 2015 at 2:42 pm #

    I like reading through an article that will make people think.
    Also, thanks for allowing for me to comment!


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